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Week 18 Fantasy Baseball Sleeper Stock Market: Mejia, Ubaldo, Rienzo, Delgado

Jenrry Mejia Fantasy Baseball Pickup
Jenrry Mejia Fantasy Baseball Pickup

Mar 11, 2012; Lakeland, FL, USA; New York Mets relief pitcher Jenrry Mejia (32) pitches against the Detroit Tigers during the game at Joker Marchant Stadium. The Mets beat the Tigers 11-0. Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

I was fully prepared to devote the entire stock market post to the plethora of players that would surely be traded on Wednesday, or as it’s better known, sportswriter Christmas. Instead, we all got coal (likely for wasting so much valuable internet space on Tim Tebow coverage) and the deadline was a bust. There were plenty of great, and not-so-great, prospects that moved but for the most part the deadline did not affect anyone’s fantasy roster – unless you were really banking on Jose Veras for saves. So instead, let’s take a look at who’s up and who’s down in a league that basically looks exactly like it did yesterday.

Buy:

Jenrry Mejia: Solid Buy. Mejia wasn’t quite as good in his second start as his first, picking up the loss while surrendering three runs, six hits, a walk, and striking out four against the Marlins through six innings of work. Still, coupled with his first start, he now stands at 1-1 with a 2.08 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, and 11 K/1 BB over 13 IP. In the Marlins game, he really just had one bad inning in the third so really this is a guy who has pitched 12 good innings and one bad one. Mejia was the Mets’ top pitching prospect back in 2011 but has been set back by multiple injuries. He’s finally fully healthy now and put up a 2.55 ERA and 26 K over 24.2 IP in the minors this year before being called up. In his career, the 23-year-old owns a 2.87 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, and 8.0 K/9 over 398 IP. More importantly, he owns a career 0.3 HR/9 which significantly minimizes the risk of a blow up.

Andre Rienzo: Solid Buy. Rienzo looked very impressive in his Major League debut on July 30, allowing no earned runs, five hits, three walks, and striking out six over seven innings of work. He’s been inconsistent in the minors, putting up a 4.06 ERA and 1.34 WHIP this season compared with a 2.53 ERA and 1.16 WHIP last season but he strikes out 9.0-9.8/9 and has shown glimpses of solid potential. The real question is whether the ChiSox keep him in the rotation or fall back on the more experienced but struggling Dylan Axelrod.

Ubaldo Jimenez: Solid Buy. I’ve tried to stay away from Ubaldo all season but he’s strung together two good months now and is definitely worth a look. Over his last nine starts, Ubaldo is 4-1 with a 3.08 ERA and 43 K over 49.2 IP. On the flip side, he’s given up 30 walks over those starts so he isn’t going to help your WHIP any. If he can keep the ERA down, he can still be a good three-category contributor.

Samuel Deduno: Solid Buy. Deduno has quietly put up a very solid season for an irrelevant Twins club and is now 7-4 with a 3.18 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, and 42 K over 76.1 IP. He’s looked terrific of late, going 3-0 with a 1.29 ERA, .186 BAA, and 14 K over 21 IP. He doesn’t have the strikeouts but he can be a very solid contributor who continues to improve as the season moves along.

Randall Delgado: Solid Buy. Like Deduno, Delgado hasn’t been talked about much yet now stands at 3-3 with a 2.85 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, and 38 K/10 BB over 53.2 IP. Most recently, he’s pitched 14.2 scoreless innings, pitching a complete game three-hitter in his last start against the Padres. The strikeouts aren’t great but the WHIP is improving and he has yet to allow more than three earned runs in a game this season so there is very little risk.

Jurickson Profar: Speculative Buy. It’s safe to assume that Nelson Cruz will be suspended for his involvement in the Biogenesis case and since the Rangers didn’t acquire anyone at the deadline they will likely look within. The only two real candidates are Profar and Manny Ramirez. Neither has been impressive but at least Profar has been unimpressive in the Majors and a chance to play every day could be just what he needs. Baseball’s top prospect had 19 RBI, 13 XBH, 27 R, and six steals over 37 games before being called up to the Bigs.

Sell:

Raul Ibanez: Ibanez hasn’t hit a home run in more than two weeks and hasn’t hit more than 24 home runs since 2009. It was nice while it lasted but we all knew the party would come to an end. Hopefully you were able to dump him off on a naïve owner before the All-Star Break.

Jedd Gyorko: Rookies always tend to disappoint and it’s for one or more of the following reasons: 1) they’ve never played this many games, 2) pitchers stop throwing them fastballs, or 3) they can’t produce consistently because pitchers have neutralized the one thing, whatever it may be, that made them a special prospect. Gyorko was impressive earlier this season but hasn’t been the same since returning from a groin injury. In 13 games since coming back, Gyorko is 5-for-50 with no homers, one RBI, one run, no walks, and 16 strikeouts. Maybe he can turn it on later as the season moves along but he’s not worth that much (unless you are really shallow in the infield) to keep around until he does.

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